7 Years

The world keeps spinning and we keep living our lives without you in it. I still have days that I just sit and ponder why you had to go, it literally makes no sense!! I keep looking/asking for answers. Apparently, there are no answers I just need to accept it and move forward, SMDH!!!

Not certain what happened but I missed posting on your 6th Angelversary!!! I’ll try to catch you up as so much has happened – I’m pretty sure you are aware of everything that’s been going on, but I also like to have this chronicle of life since you passed.

I’ll begin by mentioning the pandemic! COVID-19 was a mess, and honestly still is AND we have a new president –

You, Richard and Al gained another fire angel too. Kevin holds a special place in my heart, the memorial sign he made and placed for you at the accident scene is so awesome. I love to hear about folks that have stopped and visited the memorial.

Our kids continue to make us proud and I just love watching them excel! Erin’s doing great with balancing being a Mom to a very busy daughter, her supervisory position, patient care (although her load has been lessened due to management position), and she has started her own small business. Tommy has made the difficult decision to leave the police force and join the fire department! He too does a wonderful job balancing being a Dad to TWO children now, I’ll tell you more about that later.

Our oldest granddaughter is growing up oh.so.fast! Harlow is doing very well at school and is looking forward to the 4th grade. She is quite a dancer, and Tik-Tok & Roblox wiz. Our youngest granddaughter had back surgery this year to relieve some of the spasticity in her legs, which is working well. One more year of pre-school and she’ll be heading to Kindergarten. We have a grandson!!! Brooks Steven is the spitting image of his Daddy, growing like a weed! We continue to talk about their Poppa to the littles, share stories and pictures so they will know you and how very much he loves them.

Me, after 7 years it became time for me to finish going through your belongings. Going down memory lane with each item I handled has been challenging but a part of it has been comforting too. I was able to ensure most of the items are in the hands of good family & friends where they will be put to great use. It’ll be like having you with them –

I continue to live life the best that I can and think of you so much, gone but NEVER forgotten. I am so thankful to have our families for support and that I have the fire family as an extended family. All have provided me such comfort and guidance during my transition.

In closing, I stumbled across a song recently and the words really spoke to me – I got the best view ever, joking around with Jesus and catching up with Grandpa” I can just see it!! you watching over us brings me such peace.

Much love to you Mr. Horning…

41st Anniversary

I recall our vows 41 years ago, the words ‘till death us do part’…  This was the beginning of our married life, it never occurred to me that those words would become reality!  Yet today, here we are death parted us… It truly broke my heart, I recall the feeling explicitly.

I will always remember our married life and cherish the time that we had together.

I know that you are watching over me and guiding me along in my new life.  I know that you had a hand in directing me to ‘the man that came after’ and are comfortable  with the life that I continue to live in your honor.

I spent time with you at the ocean on Maui a day early as I travel home tomorrow.  It was a beautiful sunrise and I’m sure you saw that too!

Continue to watch over us as you are in our heart…

Much love ❤️  You’ll be in my heart

You’ll Be In My Heart

 

Five Years

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How can it possibly have been five years since you were called away???  I use this picture a lot as I feel it shows who you truly were.  I am very grateful that you were such a good sport to let me take it!

Life continues, moves forward as you always spoke about, little did we realize it would move forward without you…

Despite missing you, we as a family are living our best lives in your honor; you would be extremely proud of the amazing people our kids and their spouses have become.  Each one such a spectacular asset to society.  Our granddaughters are simply THE BEST!  Harlow is starting 2nd grade soon and loves school, dance and fashion.  Harlow has such a tender heart and makes friends easily.  She is going places that girl!!  Carlin is staring school soon too, pre-school better watch out for the youngest Horning as she is ready to take on the world!!  We continue to #sayyourname and they will each know you through our stories and pictures!

You were honored with a street name in Elk Grove!  You would love it as you are surrounded by duck breed named streets, in addition to having Richard Ibarra Drive near you too!!  Speaking of which, I along with Jan and Dina are certain that you were there to embrace your pal/co-worker Al into heaven.  It brings us comfort to envision you three fishing, biking and enjoying a beer, but ‘Just One’.

To commemorate your 5 years as an angel I had tactical knives made in your honor.  They have your last work title, badge number, your ‘dash’, and your signature “COPY THAT” phrase engraved on them.  The proceeds are being donated to the Cosumnes Firefighters Association that sponsor an annual scholarship in your name.  Currently, I’ll be donated $1,000 do the association.  I was completely humbled by the amount of interest from your family & friends.

Now, to me…  I re-retired last August and have been settling in to my new home with Neal.  This man has been a blessing to me.  He, being a widower as well ‘get’s me’ and that is so very important!  We continue to build our new life reflecting on our previous relationships.  We know how to make it work; to love on one another but at the same time honor the relationship that was taken from us.  We have been traveling a bit and as we travel we carry ashes of our spouses, remembering our time with you and wanting you both to experience all that we are now.

Finally, I wanted to share this song, something so powerful!  I want you to know that

“In my dreams I’ll always see you soar above the sky,
In my heart there’ll always be a place for you,
For all my life”…

Four Years

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The picture above was from your last trip to the Eagle Cap Wilderness area.  I know that you were in such a happy place and enjoyed camping out like a good scout, eating freeze dried food and scoping out nature at its finest.

This time of year still remains a difficult time for me…

I still reflect on certain events that led up to my final days with you.  I haven’t decided if the ‘memories’ that show up in my social media accounts are a good or bad thing, but in all honesty, I do enjoy them.  I had one that was a video of you with Harlow a few days before the accident and to hear your voice was awesome!  I can say that those last few months were incredible and I will never forget them!! Our final family trip to Maui and my setting up a local photographer to take family pictures at sunset on the beach, seeing you and our family at the finish line of the Rock n’ Roll Portland ½ marathon, waiting until I met up with you at the finish of the Rock n’ Roll Seattle marathon to verify that I had PR’d and banging the gong once we knew it was confirmed, driving the Jeep to the Coop to see the Blue Moon and climbing up on the bales of hay to get the perfect pictures, our last dinner together and our last phone conversation… Instilled in my brain forever!!

As in each day/week/month/year I have my times of feeling sad, mad, and hurt! I have learned however that these times are okay, and I allow myself to have them. I feel it is my right to have these feelings since for whatever reason (yes, I STILL haven’t figured out why!) all of our hopes and dreams were ripped away in the blink of an eye.

My new life with the man that came after has been a blessing and continues to be so.  Being a widower himself we share the same intent to honor the loves of our lives that were taken from us far too soon.  We say your names and remember your faces!!  We recognize your birthdays, our anniversaries and your angelversaries.  You will NEVER be forgotten…  We continue to live a full life in your honor.

I suffered a huge setback at the house due to a toilet tank malfunction… I was not at home but camping, therefore it went unnoticed for a week.  The laminate work that you placed in the guest bathroom was destroyed.  It broke my heart, but in the back of my mind I smiled as you were never happy with the results LOL!!!  The house really took a beating with 75% of the flooring needing to be replaced.  I could be dramatic and say that it looks like a war zone, but it’s not ‘that bad’ as I’ve been told.  For me… It’s BAD! My whole past is just in disarray and every time I am there I feel less and less connected to ‘my home’.  With the needed remodeling I feel it more and more.  The house will always have a special place in my heart as it holds so many memories that will never go away or be replaced.

A major event occurred this year… the coop ranch sold!  Your happy place, your safe place, your haven. You knew it was coming and I’m certain that you guided all involved to make the best decisions.  I’m SO glad that we have all of the pictures and videos of our and our family trips there, in addition to the many hunting trips that you enjoyed there.

I made another difficult decision, to sell your Jeep!  You had so many plans for ‘Johnnie5’… It broke my heart but I just couldn’t put it to the good use that you intended and why not allow someone else to have that pleasure? Good news is… it remains in the family and will certainly provide many years of enjoyment.

I’m sure you know my Grandma and your Uncle Buzz passed this past year. Hopefully you have all reconnected and are enjoying each other’s company on your clouds…

Your granddaughters are simply amazing! Harlow continues to talk about you, and is approaching First Grade!! Oh my how you would be so proud of this little one… She is loving being able to ride in the ‘beep’.  Our little Carlin Jewel is growing so fast! She continues to show that Horning determination in any challenges that are thrown her way.   I’m looking forward to the time that she will be able to understand our sharing of pictures and stories of her Poppa Steve!!

In closing, I wanted to share a video that was near and dear to us very close to you leaving this earth.  I will continue to rise and laugh & be stronger for all that has/is thrown at me, hoping to make you proud!

Much love – Lolly